Post Pop Depression came out of nowhere. A collaborative effort between Josh Homme (who produces as well as providing vocals and instruments) and Iggy Pop, it is however very much Iggy’s album and could easily lay claim to being his best in years.
If you took a pop record introduced it to Hunter S. Thompson and sent them off to Vegas for a weekend, then this is what you would get. It’s instantly accessible, full of catchy hooks and easy melodies but just make one scractch below the surface and this twisted pop effort has a whole lot more to give.
A whole load of which is down to Iggy, who may not be able to sing but can certainly declare lyrics in a way that makes you believe them. From the opening bars of ‘Break Into Your Hearts’ it becomes clear that everything on this album is built around him and it’s a decision that works. Because if there is one thing Iggy’s voice has, it’s character and on an album obsessed with sex, drugs and death that character is enough to elevate these words beyond those things.
That’s not to discout Homme entirely, as he could well be said to be joining Iggy in doing his best work in years on this album. His production job is masterful, knowing exactly where to go in heavy and where to step off. The whole thing has a twisted dream like feel to it and it’s easy to be caught up in the album and be swept along ahead of it.
However, his riffs are also very much a part of this and while they may not kick you in the face in the way that his best work with Queens Of The Stone Age does, it is almost in subtlety that they prosper. On tracks like ‘Chocolate Drops’ the woozy, stoner guitars bring the whole thing together and turn it into the aural equivalent of lying back in a river and letting the current do the work.
To call Post Pop Depression a surprise is an understatement. Out of nowhere two genuinely brilliant musicians have dropped an album that works like alcohol for your ears. It draws you in and wraps you up warm before taking you on one hell of a journey. You’re not quite sure where you’ve been, but you know you had a good time.